Experts advocate comprehensive NHIS cover for diabetes

Experts advocate comprehensive NHIS cover for diabetes

  • as Sanofi  Summit ends

L-R: Professor of Medicine and Endocrinology, Faculty of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, University of Yaounde, Cameroun, Jean Claude Mbanya; Head, Department of Medicine, College of Health Sciences, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife, Professor Babatope Kolawole; Medical Head, Sanofi Nigeria/Ghana and Sub Saharan Africa, Dr. Philip Ikeme; General Manager, Rx and Country Chair, Sanofi Nigeria-Ghana Folake Odediran and Professor of Diabetes Metabolism, Faculty of Medicine Alexandria University Egypt, Abdelrahim Aly, at the event.

Experts at the one-day Diabetes Summit organized by Sanofi Aventis, a global biopharmaceutical healthcare company focused on human health on Wednesday October 17, have advocated a comprehensive coverage of diabetes in the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) to assist people living with the disease in view of the inability of a majority of patients to achieve control according to international guidelines.

In a communique issued at the end of the summit, the experts recommended that the NHIS coverage should include diabetes  screening, diagnosis, treatment and the management of complications often associated with the disease.

They also recommended adequate provision of essential drugs for Nigerians living with the disease.

The experts also called for the provision of care on the Healthcare plan for the indigent, disadvantaged and vulnerable people living with diabetes.

The group noted that Diabetes Mellitus (DM) has assumed a pandemic proportion worldwide –in terms of prevalence, morbidity & mortality especially in developing countries like Nigeria with poor healthcare infrastructure and funding.

“In a bid to check the attendant reduction in the quality and quantity of life of persons living with Diabetes (PLWD), now more than ever, there is a need for call to action!” the communique reads.

The experts identified specific roles expected to be played by stakeholders in ensuring good control by people living with diabetes in the country.

For the government, they advocated  policies designed to address the challenges of Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in the country and also provide necessary infrastructure for their effective control.

They called for the training of more specialized personnel in the study, management and control of diabetes while also providing necessary funding for research on the disease.  The communique also advocated access to diabetes care for Nigerians.

They further called for the strengthening of Health Systems –especially at the Primary Health Care  level while also calling for the establishment of diabetes registry at local government, State & National level.

The need for capacity building for Healthcare professionals was also emphasized in the communique.

The participants urged medical experts to advocate for the increase of the capacity of primary care physicians and improve service quality by providing guidelines , registers, recall systems, protocols etc.

They called for improved access to specialist services and coordinated multi-disciplinary service to manage diabetes and management of complications at Primary care level.

The communique also emphasized the need for the education of media practitioners and  collaboration between them and the healthcare Professionals.

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